Hello Everyone, I get asked very often what should l look for when choosing a general contractor. Here are my Top 10 things to look for:
1) Licensed- Is the contractor licensed/bonded/insured? Anyone can put on a toolbelt, but it takes many years of experience to become a licensed contractor. Most states have websites showing the contractors histroy and list of complaints. Make sure you do your homework
2) References- Word of mouth and referrals s the best source of advertisement for any contractor, but the same is true for the consumer. Ask your friends and family who they have had success. If the job is unique or you are working with someone new, then ask the contractor for a list of references.
3) Personality/Compatibility- Having a contractor in your home can be a very intimate experience, especially on larger jobs. It is always easier to hire someone you like because you may see them for days, weeks, and maybe months. There is not perfect personality, however, the working relationship should compliment your own strengths or weaknesses. Ultimately, the most important part of the compatibility is the level of trust exhibited by the contractor. This may dictate the success of the project
4) Communication- As discussed in compatibility, the best contractors are ones that give you updates. Not all news is good news, but at least you stay informed. If you are not in the same city as the home improvement, then email and pictures are very helpful to stay informed. Don’t be afraid to ask for details from the contractor. If you do not understand that make sure the contractor takes the time to further explain. Make sure the contractor speaks your native language.
5) Proposal/Cost- When asking for an estimate, make sure there is not a trip charge prior to the contractor’s arrival. Depending on the size of the job, the proposal may take a few hours or a few days. Once the proposal is received then review the proposal for details specific to the job you requested. We always say “Good Fences make Good Neighbors.” The more detail in the proposal eliminates surprises in the end. When comparing the cost of the proposal make sure that you are comparing apples to apples. If you requested a complete kitchen remodel and one contractor a solid wood cabinets and the other contractor has laminate cabinets, then the cost will not be the same.
6) Timeliness- An age old problem in contracting is that some contractors will tell consumers what they want to hear. This holds true for the time it takes to complete a job. No matter how big or small, a good general contractor should have a schedule for his subcontractors that he can share with the homeowner. If problems arise during the job, then it is the contractors job to revise the schedule and communicate with the homeowner.
7) Warranty- When a problem arises, who is going to fix it. A good contractor does not find fault, but finds ways to get the job done. Every job should have a warranty as part of the job and the proposal. If the bid does not show it, then make sure the contractor puts it in writing. In addition each state has laws regarding contractors work. Always keep the paperwork.
Good Luck with your next project. Remember when looking for a home addition or repair, please consider Custom Homes By Chateau, LLC for your next job.
Contact Brett Primack at 702-858-4051 or firstname.lastname@example.org.